Survivors of Bereavement by Suicide (SoBS), the UK’s only national peer to peer charity serving those impacted by the loss of someone to suicide, is marking its first National Suicide Loss Awareness Day on Saturday 19 November.
A recent study has revealed that almost 10 million adults nationwide have been affected by suicide loss, and 1 in 3 of those impacted feel unable to open up to anyone about their grief.
Suicide remains a top taboo with 37% of British adults agreeing that of all deaths, they feel most uncomfortable talking about suicide. That, coupled with the reluctance of survivors to talk, creates a deafening silence around the topic of bereavement by suicide.
The research was conducted by Hall & Partners in October 2022 with over 2000 respondents. The results come as demand for SoBS services have almost doubled in recent years. SoBS was founded in April 1991 with the aim of supporting those uniquely impacted by suicide. On average the UK sees over 6,000 registered suicides per year.
Saturday 19 November 2022 will mark the first time the UK has openly recognised those who have lost someone to suicide.
SoBS serves around 12,000 survivors annually through 59 locations and a national support line. With over 300 volunteers, services span peer to peer support through group meetings, support line, email support, community forum and virtual support groups which include bereaveMENt, Polish speaking group and the Punjabi speaking women’s group. SoBS are a year-round and national organisation headquartered in Derby.
Incoming SoBS CEO, Lesley Rose commented:
“Losing someone to suicide is a unique and profound grief. It’s staggering that almost a quarter of the UK adult population has been impacted by suicide loss at some point in their lives. These findings show that survivors are not only unable to talk about their loss with others, they’re also not accessing the support they so desperately need.”
Learn more about Survivors of Bereavement by Suicide (SoBS) at: uksobs.org.
If you are struggling, there are always people you can talk to any time. In the UK, you can call Samaritans on 116 123 – calls are free any time, from any phone. Or you can text SHOUT to 85258.
If you live in the USA, you can call or text the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline at 988, and you can also contact the Crisis Text Line (text HELLO to 741741).